AP Top 25 college football rankings, Week 2: Clemson pushes toward the top

Joshua S. Kelly-USA TODAY Sports

It's still Alabama, Oregon, and Ohio State leading the pack, but Clemson is on the move.

The AP poll was released Tuesday (normally it's a Sunday release, but thanks to holiday scheduling weirdness and no NFL, here we are), and as is usually the case when aggregating several dozen people's rankings, there were few surprises. Also, the Coaches Poll (the one that will eventually count toward the BCS) is out. It's not quite as good for Oregon and Clemson.

Rank Team Record Votes Previous
1 Alabama (58) 1-0 1,497 1
2 Oregon 1-0 1,355 3
3 Ohio State (1) 1-0 1,330 2
4 Clemson (1) 1-0 1,304 8
5 Stanford 0-0 1,277 4
6 South Carolina 1-0 1,181 6
7 Texas A&M 1-0 1,085 7
8 Louisville 1-0 1,073 9
9 LSU 1-0 971 12
10 Florida State 1-0 953 11
11 Georgia 0-1 894 5
12 Florida 1-0 875 10
13 Oklahoma State 1-0 780 13
14 Notre Dame 1-0 707 14
15 Texas 1-0 674 15
16 Oklahoma 1-0 612 16
17 Michigan 1-0 583 17
18 UCLA 1-0 387 21
19 Northwestern 1-0 320 22
20 Washington 1-0 315 NR
21 Wisconsin 1-0 287 23
22 Nebraska 1-0 219 18
23 Baylor 1-0 150 NR
24 TCU 0-1 148 20
25 USC 1-0 135 24
Others Receiving Votes: Miami (FL) 127, Mississippi 50, Arizona State 48, Michigan State 42, Northern Illinois 27, Cincinnati 27, Fresno State 22, Virginia Tech 12, Bowling Green 9, Georgia Tech 8, Arizona 6, Penn State 4, Boise State 3, Virginia 2, Arkansas 1

The top mostly held firm, with Alabama maintaining an iron grip on the top spot after thumping Virginia Tech, 35-10. Ohio State didn't make up any significant ground in the title chase after a whelming (not overwhelming, not underwhelming, just... whelming) victory against Buffalo, and in fact lost ground to Oregon. But the opportunity for a big push probably won't come until October—unless 'Bama goes down against Texas A&M, anyway.

Clemson's the real story here, though, as a 38-35 victory against then-No. 5 Georgia helped propel the Tigers into the top five. You could make the case that Clemson deserves to be higher on account of having actually beaten someone of merit—and a few voters did exactly that—but the "win go up lose go down" nature of polling is a little too pervasive for Clemson to rise too much higher at this point. Plus, it was a three-point win at home, not a full-scale evisceration of the Bulldogs.

We must bid a fond farewell to Oregon State, who nuked its own Top 25 status by 1) barely making it into the rankings and 2) losing immediately to an FCS team, Eastern Washington. Oregon State received no AP poll votes and probably won't receive any until the year 2087. Or so. Boise State is also leaving us, pretty much replaced by Washington, which it lost to.

Of course, none of this is particularly relevant for the postseason or much of anything else short of discussion. The AP poll hasn't been part of the BCS selection process for years, and most of the evaluation process is just looking at box scores like any fan would do. Fortunately, discussing sports is very fun, and we'd love to hear what you think about this week's poll below.

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